Like many other succulents, Mammillaria Matudae “Thumb Cactus” likes warmer temperatures, requires little water, and needs partial to full sun. It will do best outdoors, but if you have an indoor spot that receives sunlight all day long, the Thumb Cactus may also be kept inside.
If you’ve ever had a succulent, then the watering routine of the Thumb Cactus will be familiar to you – you only need to water it when its soil is dry to the touch. This plant is drought-resistant and tolerates lack of water well.
On the other hand, the Thumb Cactus shouldn’t be overwatered. If you water the cactus so much that water stands around its roots, you may trigger root rot.
In winter, watering should be suspended. Alternatively, you may lightly mist the cactus, but only occasionally. In winter, the Thumb Cactus is dormant and thus doesn’t need as much water as in warmer seasons. But it also becomes much more susceptible to root rot in colder seasons, so you should be very careful even when misting it.
Where to plant
You should use a fast-draining cactus potting mix for the Thumb Cactus. This is to make sure that no water stands inside the soil. For better drainage, you may add some perlite or pumice to the mix as well.
If you’ll be keeping the cactus in a pot, then make sure to choose a pot that has large drainage holes at the bottom.
The Thumb Cactus requires partial to full sun, and with this in mind, the best place for it would be outdoors. Outside, the cactus will have easy access to the sun if placed correctly.
This cactus is fairly resistant to heat, but on very hot days or during heatwaves, it should be moved to a shaded location during the hottest time of the day. This is to prevent sunburn.
If keeping the Thumb Cactus inside, make sure to place it on a sunny window sill. But on very hot days, keep the plant in the shade during the peak hours, just like you would do with an outdoor plant.
In winter, you may need to move your Thumb Cactus inside. This cactus species isn’t cold-resistant and shouldn’t be exposed to cold temperatures for a long time.
General care information
For best results, fertilize the Thumb Cactus throughout the growing season (spring and summer). Use a high-potassium cactus fertilizer for this cactus. Depending on your fertilizer mix, you should fertilize the Thumb Cactus once every 4-8 weeks.
The Thumb Cactus is also a fast-growing cactus and reaches up to around 12 inches of height, which is relatively large. With this in mind, you should repot this cactus every once in a while, preferably once a year every spring or summer. Repot the cactus when the soil is dry and avoid watering it for about a week after repotting.